Lee, Campbell seek third ward seat on Piqua City Commission

PIQUA — Two candidates are seeking the third ward seat on the Piqua City Commission during the Nov. 2 election.

Kris Lee is seeking re-election to the third ward commission seat. Lee, who is also the mayor of Piqua, is also a small business owner, instructor, former Piqua police officer, and current School Safety officer with the Miami Valley Career Technology Center.

Nolan Campbell is also seeking election to the third ward seat. Campbell is a local student at the Piqua High School and Edison State Community College. He is also a small business owner and also sits on the Ohio Attorney General Teen Ambassador Board.

The following information was provided by each candidate, starting with the incumbent:

• Kris Lee

Family Information: The Lee Family has lived in Piqua for several generations contributing to Piqua’s economy through skilled jobs and services to the citizens of Piqua. We are direct descendants of the Randolph Freedmen. My immediate family consists of my wife, Peg, of 28 years and five children and two adopted family members when my sister passed away. Our family has been members of St. Mary Catholic Church, Piqua, for 28 years where I served as Piqua Catholic School Board member and School Board President for Piqua Catholic Schools for three years.

Occupation: I am a small business owner in Piqua owning Four Horseman Comics, which, after being part of the Piqua downtown community for years, the business now operates online. I have served the Piqua community as a police officer as a Drug Abuse Resistance Education/School Resource (DARE/SRO) officer for instructing Piqua School children for 10 years. I served as a Piqua police officer for 23 years and retired. I was also a substitute teacher in the Piqua school system for 10 years. I have a Master’s in Organizational Management and an MBA from Bluffton University.

My current occupation is School Safety Officer at the Miami Valley Career Technology Center. I am an instructor at the Edison State Police Academy and an adjunct for Criminal Justice and Computer Forensics at Edison State Community College.

Previous political experience: Currently serving as Mayor of Piqua. Elected as a write-in candidate for Piqua City Commissioner, third ward, in 2017 and elected mayor by majority of the Piqua City Commission in 2019.

Qualifications: Elected as a write-in candidate to the Piqua City Commission, third ward, in 2017 and elected as mayor by majority of the Piqua City Commission. Instrumental in the hiring of a new Piqua city manager who has promoted fiscal responsibility for the city of Piqua. As a result, city government reorganization has been on-going and thousands of tax-payers’ dollars have been saved. I have promoted transparency in city government with more information being provided for voters about city management and finances. I have been instrumental in helping provide more jobs and encouraging businesses and industries to locate to Piqua, which will help support local infrastructure. I promoted and support the curbing of increasing utility rates to the citizens of Piqua. I opened public comment and debate over issues, making my administration more citizen-centered and friendly toward residents and responsibly promoting city developments through a sound fiscal policy to pay for those endeavors. I continually meet with residents and groups to resolve issues, and I am open to calls and visits at any time.

Reason for seeking office: To keep the positive momentum of Piqua’s successes going, encouraging citizen-centered government, transparency, and fiscal responsibility for the city.

Goals for office if elected: The goals are citizen-centered government, transparency, and fiscal responsibility for the city while promoting and encouraging more businesses and industries to locate in Piqua, which will support viable living wage jobs. I will continue to seek to increase resources to small businesses in Piqua and attract industry with the city’s updated infrastructure. Residents are supportive of their city when they all feel valued and appreciated, and I have tried to do that in my administration and hope to continue citizen-centered government so all Piqua residents prosper and feel a sense of connection to their city.

What do you see as the greatest need to be addressed in the position you seek:

Increasing industry and helping our small businesses in town are two major needs. There are jobs that need filled. The pandemic hurt our small businesses, and we need to do what we can to help them. We have the infrastructure to attract industry of all sorts. We just need to bring them here.

• Nolan Campbell

Family information: My parents are Greg and Mia Campbell and employed locally. My older sister, Hannah, is a graduate of Edison State Community College.

Occupation: I am a full-time student at Piqua High School and a College Credit Plus student at Edison State Community College. I am also the owner of Greyhound Graphics LLC, a small business located in Piqua.

Previous political experience If elected, this position will be my first official political endeavor. The knowledge and experience gained from involvement in leadership roles at Piqua High School, participation on the city of Piqua Park Board, and the mentoring received from the Ohio Attorney General provide me with a solid political foundation.

Qualifications: At Piqua High School, I am a member of National Honor Society, where I strive to embody the characteristics of scholarship, service, leadership, and citizenship. In addition, I serve on the High School Principal Advisory Board and as the Piqua City School Board Student Representative, providing a student perspective on administrative decisions being made at the building and district level. At the city government level, I serve on the Park Board, providing guidance for the direction of the parks department. I am in my second term on the Ohio Attorney General Teen Ambassador Board, where under the direction of Attorney General Dave Yost, I collaborate with other high school students across the state on legal issues in state government. Finally, I am a four-year varsity cross country and track and field scholar athlete.

Reason for seeking office: Since moving to Piqua, I have fallen in love with the city and the people here. I am proud to call Piqua home, and I want to work to make things better for everyone who loves here. This isn’t just my home, it’s our home, and I would be honored to serve as your Third Ward Commissioner.

Goals for office if elected: If elected to office, I hope to change the citizens’ view of the commission. I want our citizens to become active participants in their city government. By involving and communicating with the citizens, trust will be restored with the community and natural transparency will occur. In addition, I want to raise the standard for equal code enforcement, improve and maintain our city parks, and develop a more progressive and balanced budget.

What do you see as the greatest need to be addressed in the position you seek:

While addressing the needs of all Piqua citizens is crucial, the greatest need I see is the inclusion of the 18-25 year old age groups in the city decision making process. This age group will be directly impacted in the future by the decisions made, and they should be aware of how this will affect them. I believe that I can be incredibly effective in connecting with this specific age group that has been neglected in our city government for far too long. Our generation is progressive, innovative, and the future of this city, and we can make a difference.